Sehome senior guard Noah Cyr-Moore isn't a loner, or anything. He loves being a part of the Mariners squad during team practices and games. I
n fact, he can't wait to get to the gym to be with his teammates.
"He's the first one to practice and the last one to leave," Sehome coach A.J. LaBree said in a phone interview. "He is focused on basketball 365 days a year. He's what we call a gym rat."
But for Cyr-Moore, there is something about the serenity of being in a gym all alone - no distractions and no worries.
Just himself, the ball and the basket - and of course the sounds of the bouncing ball reverberating off the walls and the swish of it going through the net again and again and again ...
"I like being in there alone," Cyr-Moore said in a phone interview. "You really get to work on your shot."
And work Cyr-Moore does.
When he starts his own workout, he will not leave the gym until he makes 800 shots - not just taking 800 shots, making 800 shots.
"It usually takes me a little more than 1,000 for me to make my 800," Cyr-Moore said.
And they're not all gimmes, either.
"I have a workout," Cyr-Moore said. "I usually start off by making 200 from close in, then about 200 from mid-range and then I have to make 400 from 3-point range, all over the court."
The workout usually takes him three to four hours to complete, Cyr-Moore said, and he does it at least four times a week during the offseason.
And that's not counting the time he puts in lifting weights.
During the season, he says gives himself "a break" and only has to make 600 shots four times a week, and never on a game day, of course.
"At the end of the workouts, yeah, I'm pretty tired," Cyr-Moore admitted. "I don't really use my legs a lot to shoot, so the first thing to go are my arms. ... I didn't start off there. I kind of took it as a challenge and worked up to it."
Needless to say, Cyr-Moore has a shooter's mentality.
Last year, he was Sehome's only player to average in double figures with his 10.7 points per game, as he helped the Mariners get within one game of reaching the Class 2A state playoffs.
"He's a great shooter," LaBree said. "Particularly when he gets hot, he can win a game for you."
And with all the shots he's taken, there's little doubt that Cyr-Moore has the confidence that he can knock down whatever shot he needs to in a game situation.
"Every kid as they're growing up does that three, two, one at the buzzer," Cyr-Moore said. "I try to make all the jump shots in practice as real as I can and move this way or that way. I have confidence that I can do whatever my team needs me to do, because I've made so many shots in practice."
But it's not just his shot that the 6-foot-1 Cyr-Moore has improved this year.
He said he now realizes the importance of playing good defense, and he even flirted with his first career triple-double during the Mariners' 54-48 victory over Squalicum on Monday, Dec. 3, logging 11 assists and 8 rebounds to go along with his 19 points.
"That was a real improvement for him," LaBree said. "I don't know that he had more than five rebounds in any game last year, so you can tell how hard he's worked to improve. He's bigger and stronger, and he's improved."
But Cyr-Moore also knows he doesn't have to do it alone.
He is one of four returning players for Sehome that saw extensive playing time last year, joining fellow seniors Gabe Sanchez and Charlie Linneman and junior Evan Miksovsky.
"We've been playing together since we were in the fifth grade," Cyr-Moore said. "It's kind of neat that we've stayed playing together until now. It means a lot, because we know what each other's strengths and weaknesses are."
But there's probably nobody that Cyr-Moore feels more comfortable with than Sanchez, his backcourt running mate.
Like Moore, Sanchez has a shooter's mentality, as he was second on the team with 9.8 points per game last year.
"We're kind of like brothers out there," Cyr-Moore said. "It takes a whole bunch of pressure off me, and I hope I take a lot of pressure off him. I know I have someone else to handle the ball out there, and we just know how each other operates."
With the two of them back together for their senior seasons, the Mariners are hoping to get back to the 2A Northwest District Tournament in February and pick up just one more victory so that they can return to state for the first time since Cyr-Moore's older brother, Will Moore, was part of a Mariners squad that placed eighth at the 2008 2A State Tournament during LaBree's first season at the helm.
"I think we're going to have to fight through a lot of adversity," Cyr-Moore said. "Fortunately, we've been through a lot together. I mean, the last seven years we've learned a lot about each other and how to work together. It would be great to finish strong with these guys."
Reach David Rasbach at email@example.com or 360-715-2286.
Reach DAVID RASBACH at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 715-2271.